Galway too good for Wexford in Minor Hurling semi-final
Electric Ireland All-Ireland minor hurling championship semi-final
GALWAY 0-20 WEXFORD 0-11
By Paul Keane at Croke Park
Sean McDonagh helped himself to a dozen points as Galway moved within an hour of their third consecutive Electric Ireland All-Ireland minor hurling title success.
The holders led from the first minute until full-time and were full value for the nine-point semi-final win which propels them through to an August 18 final against Kilkenny.
That'll be a repeat of the quarter-final group stage game which Galway won by three points at Croke Park earlier this month.
Ian McGlynn was sent off in the 38th minute so, as things stand, would be ruled out of the final.
The game stretched to almost 80 minutes in total due to an injury to Galway full-forward Shane Morgan.
He suffered the injury during a stoppage time fracas and referee Colm Cunning showed straight red cards to Wexford defenders Kyle Scallan and Cian Molloy following the flash-point.
It was a tough day for Wexford who returned to Croke Park following last month's Leinster final triumph, their first provincial title since 1985.
AJ Redmond fired 1-11 on that occasion but, mirroring the team as a whole, was unable to influence the game in the same way this time, striking four early wides.
In truth, it was a tense and tight encounter that reflected the huge prize on offer. Galway led 0-10 to 0-3 at half-time with six of the westerners' scores coming from placed balls.
Man of the Match McDonagh converted all of those and finished the half with seven points in total after an impressive display.
Alex Connaire was also on the mark with two first-half points for Galway as they put themselves in a winning position with 30 minutes to play.
Galway stretched their lead to nine before McGlynn's dismissal and, to their credit, retained that advantage at full-time.
Redmond drilled four second-half points from frees for Wexford but they needed a goal and it never arrived despite opportunities for David Cantwell and Molloy while Richie Lawlor fired a point just over the bar.
Wexford did reduce the gap to seven points in the 58th minute but Galway finished stronger with scores from McDonagh and substitute Paddy Cummins.
Galway scorers: Sean McDonagh 0-12 (0-9f), Alex Connaire 0-2, Tiernan Killeen 0-2, Colm Cunningham 0-1, Gavin Lee 0-1, Greg Thomas 0-1, Paddy Cummins 0-1.
Wexford scorers: AJ Redmond 0-5 (0-5f), David Cantwell 0-2, Cian Byrne 0-1 (0-1f), Josh Shiel 0-1, Luke Kavanagh 0-1, Richie Lawlor 0-1.
GALWAY: Michael Egan; Adam Nolan, Eoin Lawless, Christy Brennan; Enda Collins, Ian McGlynn, John Cooney; Liam Leen, Alex Connaire; Tiernan Killeen, Sean McDonagh, Colm Cunningham; Greg Thomas, Shane Morgan, Ruben Davitt. Subs: Gavin Lee for Davitt (40), Diarmuid O'Leary for Kirwan (48), Paddy Cummins for Leen (51), Eanna Davoren for Collins (55), Oisin Slevin for Killeen (63).
WEXFORD: Cian Byrne; Joe Conroy, Kyle Scallan, Dylan Whelan; Justin Moran, Cian Molloy, David Codd; Jack Kirwan, Luke Kavanagh; Josh Shiel, Paddy Whitty, Dylan O'Neill; AJ Redmond, David Cantwell, Richie Lawlor. Subs: Cian Byrne for O'Neill (h/t), Cian Browne for Whitty (h/t), Conor Foley for Shiel (46), Sean O'Hanlon for Cunninhgam (48), Oisin Pepper for Redmond (56).
Referee: Colm Cunning (Antrim).